Golf: Ropiha in hot form

Taupo professional Troy Ropiha is the form golfer heading into the Harewood Open on the Charles Tour this week in Christchurch.

The two-time winner on the Charles Tour, who claimed the Taranaki Open as an amateur and as a professional, won the Kaikoura Pro-Am on the weekend for his second win in his last three starts.

In the third of those three events Ropiha finished runner-up at the Carrus Open. He was blown away by a ball-striking masterclass from Mark Brown who shot a 62 to win by four shots.

But Ropiha, a former New Zealand amateur rep, is feeling good about where his game is going.

"I have been really happy with how I am playing," said the 30-year-old.

"The key to my recent form is that I have just refocused and I guess set a couple of little goals that I want to achieve. I am just enjoying playing golf again.

"I'm just going to keep it simple and have fun not put any expectations on myself this week."

Ropiha will be expected to contend the inaugural Harewood Open alongside two-time New Zealand Open Champion Greg Turner and seasoned pro Grant Moorhead with a host of talented amateurs also on show.

He is looking forward to playing the new layout which Turner and his business partner Scott McPherson have recently reworked.

"To be honest I know nothing at all about the course apart from it being a new course. We played the other Harewood course for pro ams the last few years so I am excited about playing the new layout."

Ropiha said it was great that the Harewood Open was taking place after the Shirley Open had to suspend their event after suffering severe damage to the clubhouse.

"I think it's awesome that we have another Charles Tour event to play. I can't wait to play. It would be awesome if we could get 10-12 of these every year and make it a real tour.

"The Charles Tour has been great for developing talent in New Zealand and it would be good to see it grow further."

Ropiha wants to make the most of his current form. He plans to travel to the PGA Tour of Australasia Q-School and if that goes well possibly try his luck at the Asian Tour Q-School as well.

The Harewood Open on the Charles Tour is on from Friday to Monday.

- APNZ

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